The Tingle-Mingle

Yesterday I was in a packed subway car, on my way to a party and completely lost in thought, when suddenly I felt something vibrating.  I looked accusingly at the man next to me.  I was--quite against my will of course--tightly wedged against him, leg-to-leg, arm-to-arm. “Why is this man’s leg buzzing against me?” I thought. “What is that?  Who the hell does he think he is?” Then I realized with chagrin that it was me.

“Whoops!” I laughed apologetically, and then squirmed sideways so that I could wriggle my fingers into my coat pocket to retrieve my phone, which was, of course, the culprit.  Fortunately (thank you, god), the man laughed too. 

“I’m so sorry,” I said, “I had it set to vibrate so that it would not bother anyone, but I guess it would have been better if it were set to ring.”

“That’s okay,” he said.  And we proceeded to have a very engaging discussion about cell phones and etiquette, and also about which cell phone companies offered the best coverage in Manhattan (including service underground).  Believe me, when you are on a stuffy, crowded train, this kind of conversational diversion is highly beneficial to one’s equilibrium.

Later that night, at the party, I had forgotten that I had put my phone down on the kitchen table.  Suddenly it began, once again, to vibrate, moving across the table toward the edge.  A woman caught it right before it fell. 

“Oh, thanks,” I said, “My phone was obviously trying to jump.”

“Tell it things aren’t that bad,” laughed the woman. 

“Maybe it felt abandoned by me,”  I said. This led us into a conversation about society’s addiction to email, Facebook and texting--subjects everyone likes to talk about these days.  As a result I met her friends, and later, her friends’ friends.

Who says technology is bad for socializing? All in all, I got good vibrations.


  1. I thoroughly enjoyed the "Tingle Mingle"!..So glad to hear of a cell phone prompting positive mingling opportunities, instead of causing nasty glares when ringing at an inopportune moment.

  2. Methinks you may have started a new subterranean mingling craze.

  3. A positive cell phone story is indeed a rarity. I'm afraid I still see them as a necessary evil.

  4. Tingl mingle - this is too cool! Now I've got to figure out how to set the nasty little thing to do that---

  5. Whoops - Tingle Mingle - the very thought of this made me misspell it.